Albums | Reviews

The Shires Accidentally on Purpose Review

April 19, 2018

Accidentally on Purpose is the upcoming album from duo The Shires. The twelve track collection was written and recorded in Nashville, and it’s apparent from the beginning just how much being there has influenced them. The production is bigger, there’s a wider range of instruments used and their sound is in line with what’s being currently played on US pop country radio.

Opening track ‘The Hard Way’ is a heartbreak song with a theme of ‘you don’t realise what you’ve got until it’s gone’ running through it. It’s up-tempo and I feel it would work well on country radio stateside. The record quickly picks up the pace with the fun filled ‘Echo’, this catchy number will undoubtedly have everyone singing along in venues across the country. It’s a firm favourite of mine and features some cleverly written lyrics, including “there’ll be ripples in the coffee cups” – It could be a huge crossover hit. Continuing the fun is lead single ‘Guilty’ which is similar to ‘Echo’, although for me the former is the strongest of the two tracks. It wouldn’t be a Shires album without a few of their signature ballads and luckily we don’t have to wait too long to hear one ‘Sleepwalk’ is a standout track that features sublime harmonies and superb vocal delivery over a bed of mandolin and guitar. I’ve heard it stripped back with two acoustic guitars and it still sounds just as good, I’m looking forward to hearing this one live. Sticking with the ballads ‘Strangers’ is a huge track which showcases Crissie’s powerful vocal ability in particular. Title track ‘Accidentally on Purpose’ tells the story of Crissie trying to decide if she should miss her flight home to the UK after meeting a man out in Nashville, while the highly anticipated track written by Ed Sheeran ‘Stay The Night’ a lyrical masterpiece. The song opens with Earle over a simple guitar riff before Rhodes joins him to create a quite an easy listening song. The slightly folk sounding ‘Ahead Of The Storm’ has quickly become one of my favourites filled with sombre lyrics, I adore Crisse and Ben’s harmonies on this one. Closing the album is piano driven ballad ‘Loving You Too Long’ which is reminiscent of their earlier ballads ‘Black & White’ and ‘Desperate’ This could be a contender for the John Lewis advert come Christmas time.

Overall AOP is a solid album and shows progression from Ben and Crissie. I recommend listening outside in the coming Summer months.  Fingers crossed this will be their first number one album.

Buy AOP here

Catch The Shires on tour in May/June

May 12th: Guildford G Live
May 13th: Bournemouth Pavilion
May 14th: Cardiff St. Davidís Hall
May 16th: Bristol Colston Hall
May 18th: London Royal Albert Hall
May 19th: Folkestone Leas Cliff Hall
May 20th: Sheffield City Hall
May 22nd: Ipswich Regent Theatre
May 23rd: Cambridge Corn Exchange
May 24th: Oxford New Theatre
May 27th: Glasgow Royal Concert Hall
May 28th: Gateshead The Sage
May 30th: Carlisle Sands Centre
May 31st: York Barbican
June 1st: Birmingham Symphony Hall
June 3rd: Stoke Victoria Hall
June 4th: Liverpool Philharmonic Hall
June 5th: Llandudno Venue Cymru
June 6th: Manchester Bridgewater Hall
June 8th: Nottingham Royal Centre
June 9th: Brighton Dome
June 10th:Basingstoke The Anvil

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